Autumn leaves in Big Wood.
What's a tree between friends?
An unusual lunch spot, but it didn't top a lot of talking going on.
The reason for a slight detour as they were blocking the path.
"Is this really Nercwys Forest?"
The Clwydians Hills beyond Eryrys.
Moel Famau in the distance.
Without seeing Moel Famau a walk in the Clwydian Hills wouldn't seem right!
Walk stats: Distance: 8.6 miles. Climb: 1156'.
Time: 5 hours 18 minutes. On the move walking average: 2.o m.p.h. Overall walk average: 1.6 m.p.h.
Group: Martyn, Sue Pelissier, Phil, David S., Mike and Celia.
The walk didn't start quite as expected, just as we were putting our boots on Celia started to feel unwell and and the best option was for David to take her home.
The rest of us set off in Winter gear and some even in waterproofs as there was dampness in the air that could almost be construed as rain. Despite the forecast of temperatures feeling close to 4-5 degrees Celsius, we soon warmed up and my glasses started to steam up frequently, something that I hadn't experienced for many months. My decision to where my Paramo jacket wasn't a good one as I soon felt a though I was cooking from within.
The walk through Big Covert (wood) was delightful, the first time this year we had been able to walk through a wood with the rustle of dry leaves below our feet and the Autunmn colours were superb.
We probably dawdled a little too much, as we didn't want to get to Maeshafn too soon, as we needed to give David enough time to return to Maeshafn after taking Celia home. In fact David had to wait half an hour for us to arrive.
The planned early lunch at Maeshaf was delayed for David to warm up as he had got cold waiting for us. Lunch was taken on the East side of Burley Hill Quarry and West of Gwyndy. Phil spotted an old wall boundary behind a Hawthorn, but allowed us access and suitable perching places.
Running a bit late we decided to miss out Bryn Alyn and head on a more direct route to Nercwys Forest, that also had the advantage that tedious climb across its flanks.
Our approach to across Nercwys Mountain was blocked by a large bull watching our every move as he guarded his offspring and their mothers. Going around the edge of the field seemed the wisest choice.
Nercwys Forest lived up to its reputation in terms of finding the right path to take, It didn't help that we entered it from a different direction and that the part of the forest that we usually go through was no longer a forest! We eventually found the right path and the road that led us to Eryrys.
Once again we had a slight change of route as "we" decided to avoid the climb over Bryn Alyn and took a track around the Western side.
The only muddy section was entered the last couple of fields before arriving back at the car. Calves in the field had churned up the area adjacent to the new galvanised gate that had replaced the old stile.
Birds seen or heard today included: Common blackbird, House sparrow, Common gull, Carrion crow, Jackdaw, Black-billed magpie, Wood nuthatch, Goldfinch, Woodpigeon and Common kestrel.
We arrived back at the cars having had good walk, without the cold temperatures predicted and no evidence of cold winds either. Phil also made the suggestion that next time we do the walk, we should cross Bryn Alyn after descending the path through the Western side of Big Covert (wood). If I remember or someone reminds me, we probably will.
After walk drinks were enjoyed at the Glasfryn at Mold, where Purple Moose's Snowdonia Ale and coffee were the drinks of choice.